Movie: “The Deer Hunter” directed by M. Cimino, 1978.
The movie “The deer Hunter” genuously combines two big genres: War movie and
Drama, the characteristics of this movie using these genres will be discussed in a second and
third part of this paper. Because it is necessary to define the two genres, to set them up, in
order to understand how this movie fits and how it breaks from the rules of these genres.
Since they depict human behaviour, Drama is probably the genre that has the largest
scope. It consists basically in showing certain characters in reaction to events of life, and that
by telling true stories. These stories are meant to represent what a human being could go
through, so Drama stories go from birth to death wedding, social movements, injustice,
exploitation, violence, etc, basically any kind of human experience bringing emotion.
The birth of this genre, is as well as musical, is partly due to the great depression,
showing for example the effects of it on the society in William Wellman's
Wild Boys of the Road
(1933). Because of its broadness, the genre quickly divided itself in
sub-genres, like crime films, melodramas, or biopics.
In a technical sense, drama doesn’t have a lot of particular features of its own,
however, it has some classical shots and scenes recognizable.
For example, a lot of dialogue scenes, usually with only two characters, a lot of long close-ups
on faces, in order to catch an emotion out of a face. Music is used a lot to reinforce feelings.
Drama movies were always in the context of their period, dealing with social issues of their
time, and that can be a way to determine the talent of a director, when he manages to make a
timeless drama, like “the Godfather” (Coppola, 1972).
The other genre of this movie is the War genre. No doubt can be made about this when
we jump in the green hell of Vietnam.